Genetic Testing Clinic (GTC)

The Genetic Testing Clinic (GTC) is a clinic run by a group of genetic counselors at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. The GTC team works closely with doctors throughout the
hospital to coordinate genetic testing for their patients.

The GTC team can:

  • Work with referring providers to find a genetic testing plan that is right for each patient
  • Assess insurance coverage for testing
  • Guide patients and families through the testing process
  • Help to explain results

What is a Genetic Counselor?

Genetic counselors are healthcare professionals with specialized education and training to help patients and families understand and cope with genetic conditions. They also have advanced training on how to interpret genetic testing results.

They can provide expert guidance about:

  • How inherited conditions might affect them or their families
  • How family and medical histories affect the chance of disease development or recurrence
  • Which genetic tests may or may not be right for them, and what those tests may or may not find
  • How to make the most informed choices about genetic testing and managing health conditions
  • And more, on a case by case basis

Why was my child referred to the GTC?

You were referred to the GTC because the doctor thinks that there could be a genetic reason for your child’s health concerns.

What can I expect at the first appointment?

You will meet with a genetic counselor to talk about the genetic testing that your doctor recommended. They will review the testing and answer your questions. The genetic counselor will ask about your child’s development and medical history, and about other family members’ health. This information helps us to ensure that each patient gets the right kind of genetic test.

A child’s parent or legal guardian must be present to provide consent for genetic testing. It is not strictly necessary for the child to be present, since there will not be a physical exam.

If you decide to proceed with genetic testing, we will work with the hospital’s insurance authorization team to request insurance coverage. Patients typically need to return to a Children’s Hospital facility to have their blood drawn after insurance approves the testing.

How do I make an appointment with the GTC?

After your referring provider requests a consultation, there are two scheduling options:

  • Same-day Appointments are often available. Please ask the discharge staff about available appointments when you check out.
  • Schedule for a later date – You can also set up an appointment to return to the GTC on a different day by calling 412-692-7733.

Directions to the GTC

Children’s Main in Lawrenceville

  1. If you are here for an appointment, take the GRAPE elevator down to the 1st floor lobby
  2. Check in at the Welcome Desk to get a badge; you will need photo identification
  3. Take the ORANGE elevator to the 6th floor
  4. Follow the signs toward the EMU
  5. Proceed to the registration area, on the right when you enter the 6e EEG/EMU hallway
  6. Use the self-check-in kiosk in the waiting room to register for your appointment

Children’s South in Bridgeville

  1. Located at 205 Millers Run Road (Route 50) Bridgeville, PA 15017
  2. Enter through the main doors and proceed to the elevators on the left
  3. Take the elevator to the 3rd floor, then proceed left to the neurology waiting room
  4. Check in with the front desk to register for your appointment

Children’s Pine Center in Wexford

  1. Located at 11279 Perry Highway Wexford, PA 15090
  2. Parking is located behind the building (off Bonnie View Drive)
  3. Enter the building through the center door labeled Children’s Community Pediatrics
  4. Take the elevator to the 2nd floor
  5. Proceed to the right to enter suite 202 and check in at the front desk
  6. If you have problems finding the suite, you can call the front desk at 724-940-6161

What will happen after the GTC appointment?

Your referring provider or the GTC genetic counselor will call you when your test results are available. If you would like, you can schedule a follow-up appointment to discuss the results and what they mean for you and/or your family members.

Genetic Testing Clinic Staff

Jodie Vento, MGC, LCGC
Genetic Counselor, Supervisor

Kelsey Bohnert, MRes, MS, LCGC
Genetic Counselor

Christine Munro, MS, MPH, LCGC
Genetic Counselor

Natasha Berman, MS, MPH, LCGC
Genetic Counselor

Charlotte Skinner, MS, MPH, LCGC
Genetic Counselor